Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Higher, Faster, Stronger - A Critical Analysis of the Olympics

My article on the history and politics of the Olympic Games published in the Irish Marxist Review, which you can read in full here: 
For two weeks this summer London will play host to the Olympic Games. Against a backdrop of austerity-driven public spending cuts, thousands of athletes from more than two hundred countries will contest 26 events, competing “in the true spirit of sportsmanship, for the glory of sport and the honour of our teams”. Awash with brands and corporate logos the Olympics have become the quintessential mega-event; a global, neo-liberal, five-ring circus. Those five rings of the Olympic symbol adorn everything from soft drinks cans to aircraft, the product of billion dollar sponsorship deals. To ‘protect’ the games the UK government is deploying 13,500 troops, locating surface to air missiles on the rooftops of residential housing, and stationing the warship HMS Ocean on the River Thames. London can expect a "sporting jamboree of militarized corporate banality".
A huge thank you to all those who offered suggestions, sent links and recommended books and articles!